South College, a red brick building with a tower.

MA/PhD in English

Our MA/PhD Program draws outstanding students from every state and from around the world. Areas of particular strength include African American literature; American Studies; Colonial, Post-Colonial, and Transnational Studies; Composition and Rhetoric; Early Modern and Interdisciplinary Renaissance Studies; Native American Studies; and Environmental Humanities.


Department of English Scholarship & Awards Ceremony MFA

MFA for Poets & Writers

Among the oldest and most respected MFA programs in the country, the MFA for Poets and Writers at the University of Massachusetts Amherst is a three-year program dedicated to writing workshops and the completion of a book-length manuscript in prose or poetry. 

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Terminal MA in English

Our terminal MA in English allows you to take courses in American Studies, Composition and Rhetoric, Early Modern and Interdisciplinary Renaissance Studies, and more.

View of the Connecticut River from Sugarloaf Mountain, Sunderland.

A Wealth of Resources for Scholars and Writers

The Five College community and the surrounding areas have much to offer in terms of both cultural and scholarly resources. The Five College Library Special Collections includes important book and manuscript materials on women’s history and the history of women’s education, the papers of W. E. B. Du Bois, and the papers and correspondence of authors including Emily Dickinson, Robert Frost, Carl Sandburg, Harvey Swados, Sylvia Plath, William Carlos Williams, and Wallace Stevens, among many others. Within easy striking distance too, are the Wadsworth Atheneum in Hartford, the American Antiquarian Society in Worcester, the National Yiddish Book Center in Amherst, and the libraries of Harvard and Yale Universities. 

EGO Conference 2023

Student Community

Our students hail from all over the United States and around the world, and they are wonderfully diverse with respect to age, race, sexual orientation, and professional interests. Students regularly present papers at both regional and national conferences, and many leave with at least one publication at the time of their doctorate.

Visit the Professional Development page to learn more.

Spotlight on a Graduate: Catherine Elliott Tisdale, PhD

At UMass, my drive to explore led me to work on website development, content writing, editing, event planning/marketing, archival work, etc. Now that I am at R Street, I work on subjects spanning energy and sustainability, cybersecurity, criminal justice, alcohol regulations, governance, and more.

Catherine Elliott Tisdale
Catherine Elliott Tisdale